France: Tunisians celebrate overthrow of Ben Ali

France: Tunisians celebrate overthrow of Ben Ali

Tunisians in France celebrated the other-throw of their President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali Saturday, expressing their hope for democracy.

5,000-10,000 people marched in Paris. The police estimate there were 8,000 participants. The demonstrators - mostly Tunisians and French-Tunisians, as well as representatives from the French Left, assembled in the Place de la République square in central Paris.

Several thousand people marched in Marseille (police estimate 2,100), Nice (police estimate 1,000), Toulouse, Bordeaux and Lyon, shouting "Ben Ali murderer" and singing the Tunisian national anthem.

In Marseille, the procession - displaying Tunisian, as well as some Algerian and French, flags - marched through a neighborhood with a large North-African community, and then stopped by the Tunisian consulate, which was guarded by barricades and riot police.

The protesters shouted "Ben Ali murderer" and "Ben Ali to justice", and carried signs which read "tribute to our martyrs", "hand in hand for democracy", "back to civil peace" and "Saudis collaborators".

Source: Le Monde (French)